Definition of represent in English:



  • 1Be entitled or appointed to act or speak for (someone), especially in an official capacity.

    ‘for purposes of litigation, an infant can and must be represented by an adult’
    • ‘To represent members effectively, directors must know what members need.’
    • ‘She is represented by Ricco / Maresca Gallery in New York.’
    • ‘Just remember: not only do they represent you, but they are you, to Joe Public.’
    • ‘We began mostly by representing residents on welfare cases.’
    • ‘I had a very difficult time getting a lawyer to represent me.’
    • ‘What were you looking in the gallery that represented you?’
    • ‘He didn't represent me, but he represented my father-in-law, Peter Burroughs.’
    • ‘The Academy was the brainchild of The Society of Authors, the professional body that represents writers.’
    • ‘If he currently manages other artists how long have those other artists been represented by him?’
    • ‘They're willing to put their life on hold in order to represent you, the student.’
    • ‘Seeing galleries that ‘take risks’ and represent new artists is refreshing and encouraging.’
    • ‘The reality is that they can't realistically hope to represent all students.’
    • ‘Sometimes he is also assisted by an adjunct who will later represent him during absences.’
    • ‘Mr. Childs, an experienced builder of skyscrapers, is in the sensitive position of representing a client who believes he can remake the plan for his own purposes.’
    • ‘One of them is to appoint a non-executive Director to represent consumers, and I suspect the appointment will be heavily influenced by the Government.’
    • ‘He offered me a show, bought my pieces of work and offered to represent me.’
    • ‘The ICTU is under massive pressure from trade union officials representing workers in the private sector.’
    • ‘In the ensuing excitement, they formally offered to represent him, because, as Lotta put it at the time, ‘this guy, we don't want to lose.’’
    • ‘I quit my job at the skate shop, but that means I've more time for doing what I love - representing students and fighting for their rights.’
    • ‘Tiasa, a union representing non-academic staff at Unitec, has called for the institute to drop further legal action.’
    be elected by, be the mp for, be the councillor for, have the vote of
    appear for, act for, speak for, act on behalf of, speak on behalf of, be spokesperson for, be the representative of
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    1. 1.1(of a competitor) participate in a sports event or other competition on behalf of (one's club, town, region, or country)
      ‘Owens represented the U.S’
      • ‘This year's event will feature 27 international galleries representing countries such as Japan, The Czech Republic.’
      • ‘This year 113 competitors represented twenty-six countries.’
      • ‘Coke would not comment on the player identities saying that contracts had not been finalized, but did say a player representing each country of origin in the Latino community would be represented.’
      • ‘Although he represented American Samoa, he now calls New Zealand his home and Manakau his residence.’
      • ‘These athletes represent 16 foreign countries and Puerto Rico.’
    2. 1.2Be an elected member of a legislature for (a particular constituency, party, or group)
      ‘she became the first woman to represent her district’
      • ‘He was first elected in the Fianna Fail landslide of 1977, representing the old three-seater Dublin West constituency.’
      • ‘Nobody representing the UDA was elected to the Northern Ireland Assembly in 1997.’
      • ‘‘But my past has nothing to do with what happens with my son,’ said Zainuri, who is now a local legislator representing a Muslim party in Madiun.’
      • ‘Five out of six leaders of parties represented in the parliament have since declared themselves feminist.’
      • ‘If we give the special interests a blank check in Congress, who's going to represent us?’
      • ‘Yet, the Foreign Ministry is not the only government body whose policies are influenced by Diet members representing the vested interests of certain groups or industries.’
      • ‘The Justice Party today is not represented in the Danish Parliament, nor has it been for 15 years.’
      • ‘In total, about 85 per cent of the parties represented in Parliament were in favour of a Yes vote.’
      • ‘Currently, 25 constituencies are represented, and 17 constituencies are without a minister or minister of state.’
      • ‘Both are represented in their respective parliament.’
      • ‘After two years in that position, he run for and won a place on the US Senate representing that state, a position he still holds to this day.’
      • ‘Within four years, he was elected as the Labour MP for Sheffield Brightside, and continues to represent this constituency today.’
      • ‘Hanson represented a constituency to whom the idea of the truth, of the real, of honesty, of authenticity did matter.’
      • ‘A student radical and a trade union official before he became a TD, Rabbitte has represented the constituency of Dublin South West since he was first elected in 1989.’
      • ‘In 1624, and again in 1625, he represented Montgomery in Parliament.’
      • ‘I also do not feel that my elected officials adequately represent me, nor do I believe in a majority of the actions that are executed on my behalf as an American.’
      • ‘In some ways, they represent the electorate that constantly confused group of people who understand that to solve problems, you have to be part of the participating solution.’
      • ‘Neville Bonner, who was the first Aboriginal person in Federal Parliament, representing Queensland as a Liberal Party Senator from 1971 to 1983.’
      • ‘Joe Rogers, lieutenant governor of Colorado, seeks to represent that state's 7th District.’
      • ‘The DUP, while representing the farming constituency, also lays claim to a sizeable chunk of support from working-class Protestants.’
      • ‘It is under the nominal rule of a governor general elected by Parliament to represent Queen Elizabeth II of England, the head of state.’
      • ‘Its principle task is to draw up a constitution, agreed by a parliament representing each Iraqi community.’
    3. 1.3Act as a substitute for (someone), especially on an official or ceremonial occasion.
      ‘the president was represented by the secretary of state’
      • ‘In Ottawa, the Queen is represented by the Governor-General who acts as her official host when she is in Canada, and in the provinces the Lieutenant-Governors fill the same role.’
  • 2Constitute; amount to.

    ‘this figure represents eleven percent of the company's total sales’
    • ‘Finally, inventory represents the amount of materials currently available for production.’
    • ‘The numbers which accompany the letters in your code represent the actual amount of allowance you have, in other words tax free income, before you have to pay tax.’
    • ‘The final figure will also represent a 21 per cent decline on the number of new jobs created last year.’
    • ‘His pay last year was made up of £500,000 in base salary and a £150,000 bonus, representing half the amount he was entitled to.’
    • ‘During the first four months of 1999, foreign investment in Korea amounted to US$2.8 billion, representing a 147.4 per cent increase from the same period a year before.’
    • ‘This represents some 40 percent of the overall annual production.’
    • ‘This amount, per Jupiter, represents a mere 2 percent of the total projected $2.7 billion event-ticket market.’
    • ‘Very often the cost of the shares, representing the amount subscribed on the incorporation of the company, is very low.’
    • ‘This figure represented a 5 per cent increase on the same figure in 1999.’
    • ‘The certainty equivalent represents the amount of money a producer would accept to avoid the risk present in a particular revenue scenario.’
    • ‘The amount represents the largest source of money, outweighing contributions from labor unions and political parties.’
    • ‘In the final years of the 1980s the deficits amounted to €3.5 billion, representing a huge 13 per cent slice of what was then a much smaller national cake.’
    • ‘In breach of this undertaking, the company executed an absolute assignment to another creditor of amounts represented by certain bills of exchange.’
    • ‘So, this represents the amount of money that would be left over if a company were to sell all of its assets at fair market value and then pay off all of liabilities.’
    • ‘Williamson suggests that assets with a high amount of specificity represent sunken costs that have little value outside a particular exchange relationship.’
    • ‘If they do, then this amount would represent a lowerbound estimate for the true level of economic benefits.’
    • ‘The upper values represent the 95th percentile values for the entire sample.’
    • ‘Back wages owed to workers can be used as an estimate for the cost of compliance because they represent the amount of underpayment in compensation for a typical contractor.’
    • ‘It must be pointed out that wherever land-value rating applies, it has been adopted by a poll of ratepayers representing a great amount of work and profound social concern.’
    • ‘Compared to the annual value, this drop represents an 11.5 percent reduction in regressivity.’
    constitute, be, amount to, mean, be regarded as
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    1. 2.1Be a specimen or example of; typify.
      ‘twenty parents, picked to represent a cross section of rural life’
      • ‘While in Thailand they might decide to take a tour of Bangkok city and Temple, which includes three of the most unusual Buddhist temples in Bangkok representing the finest examples of Thai architecture.’
      • ‘Lucrecia Martel, Paula Hernandez, Vanessa Ragone and Julia Solomonoff represent the clearest example of a new generation that is changing the face of cinema.’
      • ‘Tears of the Sun is not a great movie, but it is satisfying, and represents an example of accomplished film-making.’
      • ‘‘Pop Art’ was the dominating art movement, represented by artists like Andy Warhol or Roy Lichtenstein.’
      • ‘By opening their ranks to blue-collar workers and intellectuals alike Welsh choruses collectively represent a cross-section of the Welsh population.’
      • ‘They represent a cross-section of the best in their field.’
      • ‘Indeed, Bizet's Carmen represents a prime example of the continued European fascination with oriental Spain.’
      • ‘Nonvoting young people represent one of the largest swing-voter blocs out there, and we better get more effective at how we target them.’
      • ‘The above represents an excellent example of a market economy.’
      • ‘Conductus texts are in Latin and represent some of the best examples of new poetry of the time.’
    2. 2.2(of a group or type of person or thing) be present or found in something, especially to a particular degree.
      ‘abstraction is well represented in this exhibition’
      • ‘NYO alumni are represented in all 21 principal Canadian orchestras.’
      • ‘While these women may be excluded and discarded from the present, this present is also represented as something that doesn't offer much worth claiming.’
      • ‘Abuela Celia presents herself in the form of a narrative, represented as she is in the stories she tells about her life.’
      • ‘Likewise, child readers of the biographies were implicitly encouraged to identify their present with the past represented in the narratives they read.’
      • ‘He argued that these policies were of dubious benefit in terms of economic development and represented to some degree an unsanctioned redistribution of wealth.’
      • ‘After Pearl Harbor, the vitriol against people of Japanese descent is represented in propaganda posters urging national unity through xenophobia.’
      • ‘He is now free to wander and interact with less restraint, and, as such, his presence is represented with greater frequency.’
  • 3Depict (a particular subject) in a picture or other work of art.

    ‘santos are small wooden figures representing saints’
    • ‘The two panels appear joined at the hip, although they represent views of the subject as seen from opposite sides.’
    • ‘As a result, a well-trained artist does not need a life model or a preparatory sketch to represent a particular subject.’
    • ‘This was an unusual project for Rembrandt in that he rarely illustrated books and rarely represented this kind of mystical, visionary subject matter.’
    • ‘Female saints were also represented as visionaries, martyrs, and reformers.’
    • ‘The back-and-front subjects represent the beginning and end of Christ's earthly mission, and they bracket key events in the lives of St Catherine and St Ambrose on the lateral walls.’
    • ‘Here is a work of art in which style and function are closely linked, since the statue represented Dudu for all time and thus needed to convey durability.’
    • ‘Above all else, Zervos focused on the formal qualities of Miro's collages, giving little importance to subjects represented in the artist's chosen materials.’
    • ‘Ivories representing religious themes or commemorating individuals, especially imperial figures, were one high-cost, highly prestigious form of art.’
    • ‘His bas-reliefs are found throughout Benin, in restaurants, and hotels, representing diverse subjects ranging from royal motifs to Vodun symbols.’
    • ‘A triptych representing shallow boxes glowing orange and located high in a blue field, it evokes both birth and entombment.’
    • ‘Fine art represents the good things in life, while charitable causes are all about doing good.’
    • ‘The Old Masters owed their designation not only to superlative technique but also to their ability to represent the right subject.’
    • ‘In addition to representing an ideal male figure as a movable effigy, Kouros exemplifies a tendency in Noguchi's work of the early 1940s to represent the process of transformation itself.’
    • ‘Courbet earthily depicts the digging of the grave; Manet represents a cortège, not necessarily meant to be seen in the context of the cemetery, but en route.’
    • ‘Mayan examples are identified by glyphs and attributes, and are understood to represent specific subjects.’
    • ‘And the prints represent Abstract Expressionism's entire stylistic range, from fast and visceral to cool and ethereal.’
    • ‘Goya's painting represents the most dramatic scene in which Don Juan arrives at Don Gonzalo's tomb in a fierce thunderstorm.’
    • ‘Such a rethinking would not necessarily reject outright the possibility that such images represent their subjects through physiognomic likeness.’
    • ‘In some cases twin figures appeared with the owner, but a larger context for the subject was not represented.’
    • ‘When Rubens represented a great classical myth, his mind's eye saw a dynamic moment captured, with no part of the canvas wasted.’
    depict, portray, render, picture, delineate, show, illustrate, characterize, paint, draw, sketch
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    1. 3.1[with object or infinitive]Describe or depict (someone or something) as being of a certain nature; portray in a particular way.
      ‘the young were consistently represented as being in need of protection’
      • ‘Aspirations best represent the dreams of young women, while expectations reflect a realistic view of the world.’
      • ‘‘With their gift of intelligence and heart they [young people] represent the future of the world,’ he said.’
      • ‘Unmistakably, too, this description represents an aspect of his own aspiration.’
      • ‘Hermetic poetry was a poetry that sought, not to describe or represent, but to evoke.’
    2. 3.2(of a sign or symbol) have a particular signification; stand for.
      ‘the numbers 1–10 represent the letters A–J’
      • ‘However, three-dimensional figurative depictions soon predominated, with painted pictograms representing symbols, mottos, and accomplishments of kings.’
      • ‘Names may be represented by the letters of the alphabet: thus A, B, &c., may stand for any names we are considering, simple or complex.’
      • ‘In cartoons and drawings an alcoholic beverage is represented by an XXX sign, but for a reason.’
      • ‘The term was first used in a French treatise on dance by Raoul-Auger Feuillet and Pierre Beauchamp to denote graphic symbols representing the movement of the feet.’
      • ‘All throughout the menus, you'll see spinning 3D symbols representing your selected option - you'll even see tires spinning in the car configuration option that carry the assigned tread.’
      • ‘In example 50 the numerals representing the scale-degrees are misplaced, and example 20 ends just before the crucial chord mentioned in the text.’
      • ‘Her photo exhibit ‘Voices of Women’ celebrates as beautiful a wide variety of images representing women and the feminine.’
      • ‘When teachers describe for a student the actions that take place in a particular movement, the words they use are symbols representing a more abstract concept.’
    3. 3.3Be a symbol or embodiment of (a particular quality or thing)
      ‘the three heads of Cerberus represent the past, present, and future’
      • ‘Simple signifiers like ‘milk and cookies,’ for example, represent cozy domesticity or traditional motherliness.’
      • ‘Eliot represents the Jew in Daniel Deronda as a dichotomous figure, adapted from conventional stereotypes circulating in her culture.’
      • ‘The voice-over could represent the subject's thoughts, alternately addressing the viewer or forecasting a future characterized by the things it will lack.’
      • ‘The law represents an embodiment of a society's values and legal frameworks are becoming increasingly important to the study of marketing.’
      • ‘The mukanda initiation or boys requires the guidance of a spirit representing an ideal woman.’
      • ‘Van Gogh's work represents the emotional spontaneity in painting.’
      • ‘Lamps usually represent the sun and the moon, or the Creator's gift of light.’
      • ‘The workmen trudging among the rubble and girders in a corner of the site earmarked for expansion go about their business under the silent gaze of two giant faces that represent Ealing past and present.’
      • ‘The faces probably represent the Yoruba god Eshu, who mediates the human and spirit worlds and plays a prominent role in the divination process.’
      • ‘There has been a feeling that the outbreak of democracy represented a Latin American ‘spring’, with the countries now becoming accustomed to democracy and smooth handovers of power.’
      • ‘Satimbe masks represents the women ancestors who, according to legend, first discover the role of the masks in escorting the spirits of the dead onto the path to the afterlife.’
      • ‘Thus, this film represents women without prospects for ownership under a patriarchal system, as hysterical and dangerous vessels.’
      • ‘Yet this could represent the Ghost's embodiment of the disciples' moment of doubt and fear, rather than the atheism of modern generations.’
      • ‘Premised upon this is capital's fetishistic claim to represent the embodiment of individual freedom and to be a social order that suspends class conflict.’
      • ‘The sculpture represents freedom and depicts a human figure in four stages breaking free from a wall.’
      • ‘Wikipedia represents a fascinating embodiment of that collective understanding because it is open to contributions from all members of the human collective.’
      • ‘They also represent one artist's vision and interpretation of something that must have seemed distinctly exciting and foreign.’
      • ‘The images represent the spirits of people of African descent who died in the Middle Passage or later in the Americas.’
      • ‘The painting represents symbolically the relationship of papal patronage of artists and its difficulties.’
      • ‘Once at their table, Agee describes the colors and the tastes, textures, and odors of the food, claiming that these things represent the physical embodiment of home.’
    4. 3.4Play the part of (someone) in a theatrical production.
      • ‘The means of stage expression is also restricted by Yew's choice to employ only five actors to represent the many figures who appear throughout the play.’
      • ‘From his personal library of images Paul has used footage shot almost 20 years ago of his daughter Kyra at age 3, representing the role of Nijinsky's own daughter Kyra.’
  • 4formal State or point out (something) clearly.

    ‘it was represented to him that she would be an unsuitable wife’
    point out, state, indicate, present, set forth, put forward
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    1. 4.1[with clause]Allege; claim.
      ‘the vendors have represented that such information is accurate’
      • ‘The company also represented that they had helped it to hedge downside risk.’
      • ‘He further represented that he had the bank's authority to make a direct contract between it and the payee by the use of the cheque card.’
      • ‘The information contained in this article was obtained from sources believed to be reliable; however, we cannot represent that it is accurate or complete.’
      • ‘Further, he claims Eircom wrongly represented that the agreed discount was for £85,000.’


Late Middle English: from Old French representer or Latin repraesentare, from re- (expressing intensive force) + praesentare to present.